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Inspirational Reads

Ten Bold Predictions: Number Six

June 12, 2007

Tonight starts the sort of "turning point" when the predictions, I feel, aren't as obvious as some of the others I've made. Granted, this is a series geared toward children, so maybe the outcomes are supposed to be really easy to figure out, but then I have to think back to the fourth book, when I think most people didn't see Young Barty Crouch pulling off the hiding heist of the century (notice, no spoilers).

Also, this is the point where the predictions all begin to build off one another. So, I guess these are now predictions for the end of the book. Without further ado, let's get down to it.

Prediction Six: Snape's patronus is a lily

If you remember, throughout the story, especially in Book Six when Snape became the DADA teacher, he's never used his patronus to fend off the Dementors. In fact, when Harry answers that the patronus is the best way to ward off a Dementor, Snape goes ballistic reeling off a whole series of answers that Harry should have answered instead of "patronus". Snape pretty much sets himself up as being anti-patronus. But why?

Well, let's take a look at what a patronus is. A patronus is a manifestation of white light that will take on the shape of something near and dear to the creator's heart. It's a powerful bit of magic, and one imagines that it must be centered around a white-magic or healing spell or something in order to be able to fend off something as dark and frightening as a Dementor. We know that a patronus also takes on the form of something that is closely connected to a person's emotions; Lupin explained this to us in book 4, and we've seen several examples time and again: Harry and the stag, Lupin and the Moon, Tonks and the wolf. Why, then, would Snape's be a lily? The lily is a symbol of life and purity, which you would think would be the furthest thing from Snape's character, especially after sullying it in Book Six.

The simple answer is that he loved Lily Potter, and his emotions would thus influence the shape of the patronus. We know that he had feelings for Lily thanks to the scenes Harry spied in the Pensieve about Snape's past. She was the only one who was nice to him whenever the Marauders (James Potter's band of friends) would tease and ridicule Snape. And we all know how a simple schoolboy crush can turn into something far more serious, especially if those emotions are forced to be hidden away and kept secret for years. Lest we forget the posting about Betsy Hagar. *dreamy sigh*

Why does any of this matter? Well, we know that there's going to be a big fight at the end of the book. Or there had better be, dammit. And we also know that the Dementors have sided with Voldemort (he's been gathering the non-PC magical folk to his cause ever since his resurrection). We've also seen that the Dementors have a certain...taste...for Harry as they seemed to gravitate toward him throughout the story of Prisoner of Azkaban. One stands to reason that they will be at the final battle and that they'll have their sites set on Harry once more.

This is, of course, when Snape will be forced to bust out his patronus. It will be when he's trying to save Harry, and none of his other tricks and tools work. Snape finally breaks down and reveals to the world his feelings for Lily Potter. This could also come in the denouement, when everyone realizes that Snape wasn't so bad after all.

And does this tie into the other five predictions above it? You'll just have to keep reading.